Dallas-based Get Me, a delivery and ride-hailing services company, launched its ride-hailing service Dec. 15.[/caption]
A third ride-hailing company has launched services in Austin just days before City Council considers ordinance amendments that would regulate transportation network companies, or TNCs.
Get Me strives to get consumers something or somewhere through its delivery and ride-hailing services. The smartphone app first launched its Something delivery service Oct. 1 for the Austin City Limits Music Festival. The company received its TNC permit Dec. 4 for its Somewhere ride-hailing service, which launched Dec. 15.
“We’re a multipurpose app, not just ridesharing, for life’s SOS moments,” Get Me’s Chief Experience Officer Jonathan Laramy said.
Jonathan Laramy is chief experience officer for Get Me, an app-based company offering delivery and ride-hailing services.[/caption]
Get Me was founded on the premise of combining the best of ride-hailing and delivery services, Laramy said. He and the other co-founders worked with the Dallas office of Austin-based app developer projekt202 to develop the app. Projekt202 interviewed consumers and drivers to find out what people like about existing services.
“They came back to us with a concept that was in between personal concierge and personal assistant—combining rides and deliveries,” said Laramy, who is a frequent user of other ride-hailing and delivery app-based companies.
Get Me launched Aug. 20 in Dallas, where its headquarters are located, and launched Oct. 15 in Houston. Laramy said the company is opening temporary offices in downtown Austin and will relocate its headquarters in 2016.
Drivers, known as Go-Getters, are part of what Get Me calls its Ondemand Driver Network in which consumers may request a ride or delivery of small, medium or large items. The network includes motorcycles for courier services and pickup trucks for larger hauls, Laramy said.
Laramy said Get Me also does not use surge pricing during busy times, but it does charge 10 percent higher fees between midnight and 6 a.m. Delivery fees start at $15 for trips within 5 miles plus 10 percent of the cost of the items being delivered. Eighty percent of the fees to go the driver, and the remainder go to the company. Consumers may also choose to tip.
On Dec. 17, Austin City Council will consider several amendments to the city’s ordinance regulating ride-hailing companies, including Uber and Lyft. Laramy said Get Me supports the proposed changes, including requiring fingerprinting as part of background checks for drivers as long as it is seamless and not cost prohibitive to drivers.
The company already operates in Houston, which mandates fingerprinting. Laramy said such background check requirements can cost between $30-$50 for drivers. He said a fingerprint-based background check—verses a name-based check—is a more valid test of someone’s history.
“When we did our research, the No. 1 thing we could do to make sure others will use the app from the driver side and consumer side was safety and security—absolutely the top for both,” he said.
For 2016, Get Me has its sight on growth, having already expanded beyond Texas in November to Las Vegas where it only has delivery services, Laramy said. The company plans to launch in San Antonio on Jan. 14.
In the near future, Get Me will also launch its Go Giver service to deliver excess food and clothing that otherwise would be thrown away to shelters and soup kitchens.
Amy has worked for Community Impact Newspaper since September 2010, serving as reporter and senior editor for the Northwest Austin edition as well as covering transportation in the Austin metro. She is now managing editor for the 11 publications in the Central Texas area from Georgetown to New Braunfels. She enjoys spending time with her husband, son and two cats.